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Monday, January 24, 2011

Martha doesn't share! Written by Samantha Berger and illustrated by Bruce Whatley. Little Brown, Hachette. 2010. $19.99 ages 3 and up

"Martha decides to put on
her costumes.

But it's not nearly as much
fun being a magician when
you don't have an audience."

You may have met Martha in her previous book, Martha doesn't say sorry (Little Brown, 2009). She is a cantankerous and snobby little otter who likes to live life on her terms.  But, she is also willing to learn from her mistakes.

Martha is quick to teach us a new word....MINE! If you have kids, you have heard it many times and would gladly make it a 'four letter word, not to be uttered aloud'. That's not going to happen as long as there are children trying to figure out their place in the world.

There is really nothing that Martha is willing to take counsel on for sharing....not pancakes, her scooter, her dollhouse, her blanket. It all belongs to Martha, and it shall remain hers!  Her brother would love to share any number of things with her. Nope! Her parents encourage a reciprocal attitude of sharing between their children. Martha is having none of it.

It, again, evokes surprise when her family acquiesces and walks off. She quickly learns that life seems to go along swimmingly when there is an audience for your magic show, a wolf with no little pigs, a ping pong player sans partner...'it's hard to ping when you don't have someone to pong.'

It takes a lot of thinking, and the innocence of her baby brother, to evoke change; but she is willing to give it a try.  Some days are better than others.

It seems there are always new lessons to learn!

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